Advanced search

This topic is for discussions about campaigns Mumsnet is running or may be planning to run. Go here for other campaigns or petitions.

Bounty Mutiny: news and update

(103 Posts)

MNHQ have commented on this thread.

RowanMumsnet (MNHQ) Wed 09-Apr-14 10:40:15


As part of our ongoing Bounty Mutiny campaign, we've written a letter to Treasury minister David Gauke, asking him to reconsider Bounty's contract with the HMRC.

The HMRC pays Bounty £90,000 each year to distribute child benefit claim forms as part of the Bounty pack. As lots of you will know, the child benefit form is also freely available online or by phone, and our survey last year showed that some Bounty reps continue to heavily imply (or even baldly state) that women who refuse to give their personal details at the bedside will be unable to claim Child Benefit.

As Justine MN has said:

"By paying Bounty a fee for distributing child benefit forms, the HMRC is effectively handing Bounty a bargaining chip it can use to persuade new mums to hand over personal details for Bounty's own commercial gain. Thousands of Mumsnet users have made it clear that the hours after birth on a postnatal ward are neither the time nor place for the hard sell, and it's time for the government to stop financially supporting this process."

There's a petition asking the HMRC to end its commercial relationship with Bounty that has over 66,000 signatures (please do sign if you haven't!).

Just thought we'd let you know where we're at - as ever, do please let us know what you think, here on the thread, and on Twitter using #bountymutiny. And please share this page or the text of our letter far and wide, and don't forget to sign the petition. And of course if you'd like to let David Gauke know what you think, you can get in touch with him at the Treasury, or @davidgauke on Twitter.


eggeggduck Wed 09-Apr-14 20:45:23

Disgusting. Why are we paying this.

DreamsInBinary Wed 09-Apr-14 21:06:48

Signed. So pleased you are doing this.

drspouse Thu 10-Apr-14 00:37:07

As an adoptive parent, we got ours from the HV.

JulesJules Thu 10-Apr-14 08:10:44

I've signed (also hope I haven't signed before!)

I find it shocking that Bounty are PAID to be there - like others, I had assumed that they were paying the hospitals - and that was why the hospitals allowed it. Absolutely ridiculous.

yegodsandlittlefishes Thu 10-Apr-14 08:27:56

Signed. With I had added a note under the 'why are you signing' bit about registrars giving them out with birth certificates.

Although, iirc, this was considered around the time the Bounty packs came out. The reasons for not using registrars/HV was to protect the most vulnerable mothers/babies, who needed the CB most. Statistically it was usually fathers (even ExPs) who went to register the baby's name for the birth certificate while mums are in hospital. As the child benefit is in the mother's name, they didn't want to risk the mothers being prevented from getting the CB by those fathers who lose the form/cba/do not have the mother's best interests at heart. I might be misremembering this though, and it was some time ago.

captaincake Thu 10-Apr-14 16:40:09

We are all literally paying bounty to harass us shock and I can't even get child benefit anyway. I didn't realise we were paying them! Why would we pay them to then make more money? You would have thought bounty would be paying us to get the forms so they can use them to make money by signing people up.

Astonway Thu 10-Apr-14 18:33:08

This is unbelievable! shock Who on earth agreed to this deal? It is about time that civil servants were held accountable for their decisions.
The obvious time would be for the health visitor to check this on their final visit. And via e-mail of course. This is a no-brainer.

mousmous Thu 10-Apr-14 22:13:23

we got the cb form at the registry office.
which is imo the logical place to get it.

ArgyMargy Fri 11-Apr-14 08:02:11

Not everyone gives birth in hospital. Health visitors and midwives should be focusing on other things. Everyone must register a birth so it makes sense for Registrars to give out the forms. Signed. Good work, MNHQ.

Eyelet Fri 11-Apr-14 09:50:25

Not just the Bounty rep but at our unit (the NNUH) a midwife implied very strongly to me that if I didn't sign the Bounty forms then I wouldn't be able to get child benefit.

Having had a horrendous experience with my first (baby in NICU Bounty woman bounced in despite blatant lack of cot) the second time I refused to do the form and I was the talk of the ward.

I support this campaign 100%, the bloody bounty women have better visiting access that the dads - awful.

Katiebeau Fri 11-Apr-14 11:04:45

Signed. Bounty rep refused to give me a bag without signing up or having photo done (baby was poorly and in SBU and I had been crying for days at that point). DH demanded she passed us the CB form wink.

BriarRainbowshimmer Fri 11-Apr-14 11:55:24

This is a great campaign.

MetalLaLa Fri 11-Apr-14 21:31:51

I hope this doesn't get me into trouble with someone but I just did a survey on a website that was all about Bounty and mentioned MN, and I don't actually know who it was commissioned by confused I was honest about my feelings anyway, and signed the petition the other day.

JumpRope Sat 12-Apr-14 08:53:07

I'll sign. Thanks for doing this.

Bounty came in to me when my husband and first child were visiting me and my newborn. The bounty woman was with an assistant and created havoc trying to get a photo. THEN a midwife came in to do my discharge osb at the same time. Chaos. She missed that my bp, whilst not over 100 diastolic, was climbing up there, and should have rung alarm as I'd had terrible pre-eclampsia first birth. I went home and subsequently had to be readmitted twice for hypertension (post pre-eclampsia), to much upset and disruption.

I don't think they have a place in the sacred environment of mother and baby's first hours, but a lot of mums are not confident enough to say get lost.

RandomInternetStranger Sun 13-Apr-14 02:04:58

The CB form I agree with but I actually really like getting the Bounty packs and I liked the photographer coming round the ward, she was polite and respectful, not pushy or giving me any hard sell. Was actually quite looking forward to that again this time.

Lweji Sun 13-Apr-14 15:47:15

Why don't they just distribute forms at registry offices? That would be the natural place to register for CB.

If anything, Bounty should be paying hospitals to distribute Bounty packs.

ouryve Sun 13-Apr-14 17:00:02

Noticed the Guardian tweeting this, this morning.

Limafresco Tue 15-Apr-14 09:47:34

Signed. Well done Justine.

Apart from everything else - namely the terrible experiences some have had with Bounty reps such as following a neo-natal bereavement - it is completely ridiculous and un-believable that the government is paying Bounty for this (with all our taxes) rather than the flipping other way round.
I also think their presence is very detrimental to other relationships on the post-natal ward including mother and baby, mother and family, mother and her HCP's, and really detrimental to a conducive atmosphere where support for new mothers including in establishing breast-feeding can be offered.
With Bounty's partnerships with formula companies I am cynical about just what is going on here.
At any rate un-belivable that this has been going on relatively un-checked for so many years when it's of no benefit to the majority of new mothers.

Andrewofgg Wed 16-Apr-14 08:08:48

The mystery is how anyone, anyone at all, ever thought that this was a good idea . . .

ajandjjmum Wed 16-Apr-14 13:47:03

'government' spelling needs to be corrected grin on the main page!

pixiebell79 Wed 16-Apr-14 15:12:51

I was dreading the Bounty rep visit when I have birth recently. When it came to it though I simply said I wasn't interested as I didn't want to give my details out and she said I could have one anyway (which I did for the form). Was pleasantly surprised as she was quite sensitive but cannot agree more with what everyone has said here. I even wrote to my MP about it (got no response!)

dailygrowl Thu 17-Apr-14 06:17:21

I was lucky that the Bounty rep wasn't allowed on my ward (or maybe I just missed her/them)...or rather, she was lucky! I am appalled that £90,000 is being paid out to them when in fact they are getting free advertising! The child benefit forms should just be left on the wards and given out with discharge letters. They are in different languages and all mothers can easily read them when they get home. Imagine what the Dept of Health could have done with £90K for maternity services - eg more midwives or ward staff, for example. Bounty and other companies (nappy companies, etc) should be the ones paying the hospitals for the opportunity for the free advertising in those packs, in fact.

spinnergeologist Thu 17-Apr-14 07:23:58


actually the bounty people at our hospital were actually ok. Started conversation with 'do you mind filling in' and was very clear that you did'nt have to do it. When one lady said no they quite happily took out all the bits that were important and walked away. No photos, a allotted time slot to be in the wards, not pushy and handily pointed out the bits that didn't need to be filled in.

I still don't think its right and the stories I've seen here make mine look like the minority which is sad.

SuffolkNWhat Thu 17-Apr-14 13:52:13

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now